Sometimes it happens in the blink of an eye. Your parents, who you once thought were 38 years old for at least seven years, have lost their hair, shrunk a little shorter, and are starting to make way more inappropriate jokes than they ever have before. Aging comes to every living person, and at some point, you might find that those who looked after you might now be the ones who need looking after.
If you are in a position to look after your aging parents, and you also want to, you might be wondering where you start.
This is the guide you need.
Communication Is Key
Everyone has a unique relationship with their parents, and how you communicate with them will most likely be just as unique. Some will find their parents are uncomfortable with the idea of you helping them, and others might be more forthcoming with their gratitude. The most important thing you can do before you embark on this journey together is to maintain open and honest communication with your parents. Discuss their needs, concerns, and preferences regarding their care and listen to their thoughts and feelings. Understanding their perspective can help with the care you provide and could even lighten the load of the change.
Understand Their Needs
Before you can take care of your parents, you will need to know what their physical, mental, and emotional needs are. It is also important to consider factors such as their health, whether they have any conditions, their mobility, and if they have any daily or social responsibilities. This assessment will help you pinpoint where they might need help, what help you can provide, and if you might need to outsource help. If you find that their needs exceed what you can assist with, in-home care is an excellent option. Head over to alinahomecare for more information.
Know Their Medical Care Needs
Helping take care of your aging parents will most likely involve a trip or two to the doctor. It will be crucial at some point that you have access to your parent’s medical records or information so that you can provide or obtain access to appropriate medical care.
You might need to accompany them to doctor’s appointments, help them organize their medications, and keep on top of any prescriptions. You should also make sure you stay informed about any medical conditions, medications, or treatments they are having.
Time for a Home Upgrade
Whether your parents are moving with you or they are staying in their own home, make sure their living environment is safe and suitable. This could include installing rails in bathrooms, ramps outside, or performing regular tripping hazard checks. You might find you even need to make further modifications, such as installing a chair lift.
Sort Out the Legal Stuff
Not many people want to deal with it, but encouraging your parents to make legal and healthcare decisions in advance can save you a lot of worry. Make sure to cover options such as power of attorney, living wills, and healthcare proxies, as having these plans in place can provide peace of mind for everyone involved.